Features from April 2018

  • Beat the bonito blast
    Bruce Trujillo looked at a dozen boats bobbing for position in the water around him. Choosing a path, he flipped a couple of Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnow deep divers in the boat’s wake and began trolling for Atlantic bonito.
  • Make mine a MirrOlure
    Fish can be caught any number of ways, but MirrOlures hold a special place with a number of saltwater fishermen, especially those who spend time in inshore waters.
  • Mining RDU’s ‘Golden Triangle’
    Fishermen having trouble choosing a month to target largemouth bass on the three lakes around the Raleigh-Durham area can get answers from two groups — serious anglers or biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission — and they can take those recommendations to the bank(s).
  • Spring into big stripers
    Getting your string stretch by a trophy striper can happen year-round at Clarks Hill Lake, aka Lake Thurmond, but if you want to boost your odds for trophy fish, go now.
  • Swimbait? Go small
    With the introduction of Florida-strain largemouth bass into southern California in 1959, fish weighing as much as 20 pounds made that state’s waters treasured fishing grounds for the next world-record fish. Twenty-one of the heaviest 25 bass ever caught have come from California waters, mostly the San Diego city lakes.
  • Top baits for spring bass
    As the sun thaws out the Carolinas after a chilly winter, spring is welcomed, especially by fishermen with an affinity for taming big largemouth bass in shallow water. With endless lure combinations available, there is more than one way to land a heavy stringer. 
  • Try these Carolinas turkey tricks
    For the six weeks or so, we won’t be at breakfast very often. We’ll fall asleep early, while you’re barely finished watching Jeopardy after supper. Our fingers will be chalk-stained, and we’re not even teachers. We’ll have bags under the bags under our eyes. If we’re outside in the backyard during any daylight hours, you might find us looking for a big, thick tree truck to sit down against. Somebody from the office might call home to ask where we are and if we’re coming into work.

Columns - April 2018

  • April bass fishing is tough to beat
    April is the top month for the bass spawn in both Carolinas, and there is nothing like setting the hook on a sho’nuff bucketmouth from a small plastic boat. The beauty of kayak bass fishing is that it’s hard to find a body of freshwater in either Carolinas that doesn’t hold bass. 
  • Bream bonanza is at hand
    The flooded cypress and gum tree forests and the abundance of shallow vegetation of Santee Cooper is Ground Zero for some of the best panfish action in South Carolina. Bull bream and super-sized shellcrackers abound, and anglers armed with the basic techniques of how, when and where to fish for this dynamic duo have an opportunity to limit on either species or a combination of both.
  • Creme Speed Scremers
    Dusty Anders of Deville was excited when he called an outdoor writer in early February. The 50-year-old firefighter, an avid bass angler and part-time fishing guide, had just boated an 8-pound bass on one of his favorite new soft plastics. 
  • Don’t give weeds any head start
    Pests challenge farmers and food-plot developers every time seeds hit the dirt. Weeds, grasses and other competing vegetation are the chief pests that will ruin a food plot’s success. 
  • For tradition’s sake, try one
    Modern advancements in technology have made it easier than ever to be a successful archer. Tools such as compound bows with high let- offs, electronic rangefinders, magnified fiber-optic bow sights, fall-away arrow rests and many other advancements have changed our sport forever.  
  • Gobbler grub
    It's time to put one of your fresh spring gobblers on the table. This recipe is a delicious way to dish it up.
  • Spring trout are mountain blessings
    Beginning around the middle of March and continuing through May, mountain streams start warming up, browns, rainbows and brook trout become active and hungry, and mountain anglers enjoy some of the best trout fishing of the year.
  • Three go-to hard baits
    Most people who know bass fishing understand that I feel most comfortable when I’ve got a crankbait tied on. So when bass go really shallow in the spring, that makes things tough on me, but anyone who likes fishing crankbaits can still catch plenty of fish.
  • To braid, or not to braid
    Braided fishing line is a mainstay among anglers, but this product has only gained popularity in the lifetime of many people reading this. Most never heard of braided line at younger ages, but they’re now using it regularly and would feel lost without it during certain fishing situations. But for all its good qualities, it’s not always the best line to use.

Outdoor Updates - April 2018

  • 2018 Dixie Deer Classic winners
    North Carolina crowned its best bucks from the 2017-18 deer season at the Dixie Deer Classic in Raleigh the first weekend in March, and a couple of real specimens headed the list of award winners. 
  • 67 coyotes killed during Carolina Coyote Classic
    The fifth annual Carolina Coyote Classic, presented by 704 Outdoors, saw a record number of coyotes brought to the scales this past weekend at the Albemarle, N.C. American Legion Post 76, which served as the headquarters and weigh-in site of the tournament.
  • Creedmoor angler catches new N.C. state record red grouper
    Robert Dean of Creedmoor, N.C. now holds the N.C. state record for red grouper with a catch he made on June 10, 2017 while fishing on the Cheerio Lady, with Capt. John Batson, out of Carolina Beach. It took a while for all the paperwork to be submitted and approved, but Dean's 35-pound, 11-ounce catch was officially recognized as the new N.C. record on Feb. 2, 2018.
  • Hunter realizes he’s being hunted by bobcat
    Have you ever been hunting, but felt as though you were the one being hunted? That’s just the feeling Logan Foster of Chester, S.C. felt one morning last month while duck hunting with a friend in a creek bottom that was known to hold ducks.
  • NC changes deer, bear zones and seasons for 2018-19
    Deer and bear hunters in North Carolina will need to pay attention to their regulations guides this fall as the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, at its meeting in Raleigh this morning, voted to restructure deer hunting zones, move around either-sex days in the western third of the state, set a two-buck limit in the eastern half of the state — as well as establish an alligator season and protect trophy blue catfish in a handful of lakes.

Hot Spots - April 2018